Ubiquinones are a series of homologous molecules that possess a quinone active center and an unsaturated fatty tail. Ubiquinones are so named because they are widely distributed (i.e. ubiquitous) in nature and throughout the human body. Structurally they are very similar to the menaquinones, like vitamin K2. The quinone group is like a courier for protons and electrons, which is the critical property that allows ubiquinones to act as antioxidants and as important intermediates in energy generation. The fatty tail is composed of isoprenoid subunits, which are five carbon building blocks that help all living things biosynthesize critical components like immune modulators, essential oils and hormones. The number of isoprenoid units in the fatty tail is often denoted in the name of specific ubiquinones. For instance, ubiquinone-10 is made from ten isoprenoid units. Ubiquinone-10 (aka CoQ10, coenzyme Q10, Q) is more commonly referred to as just "ubiquinone." This is because it is the most prevalent ubiquinone in almost all mammals, including humans.
Supports heart function and antioxidant status*. View larger.
Utilizes the Q-absorb natural, proliposomal delivery system for enhanced absorption. View larger.
Concern about CoQ10 levels is especially important due to concern that cholesterol-lowering drugs (statins) work by inhibiting an enzyme that is also responsible for CoQ10-ubiquinol biosynthesis. As a result, anyone taking statins may have reduced levels of CoQ10-ubiquinol.
Ubiquinone and ubiquinol (aka ubiquinol-10, CoQ10-H2, QH, "reduced" CoQ10) are intimately related, as their names suggest. Inside the body, Q (ubiquinone) can only achieve its important functions in energy production , cardiovascular health and antioxidant protection with the help of ubiquinol (QH).* In fact, all of the benefits that have been attributed to CoQ10 necessitate QH involvement. The two do their work by shuttling electrons and protons back-and-forth, cyclically transforming from Q to QH and back again. In energy production, CoQ10 facilitates electron transfer within mitochondrial membranes to produce ATP, the body's energy currency.* For antioxidant protection, QH is the "active antioxidant" form of CoQ10. This means that Q that has not been converted to QH is inactive as an antioxidant. Perhaps this explains why circa 80-95 percent of total CoQ10 exists as QH in the blood and in healthy tissues that require its antioxidant function.*
CoQ10 is critically obtained from the diet, but it appears that absorption of Q may entail conversion to QH. This conversion occurs as early as in the enterocytes, the absorptive cells in the intestine, and may facilitate the absorption process. Also under normal conditions there are enzymes that help regenerate QH from Q, in the body. Unfortunately, aging and illness can lead to both a reduced ability to regenerate QH because of decreased enzyme activity and a decreased ability to absorb Q itself, possibly for the same reason.
After about age 45, total Q levels and QH levels tend to decline in various critical tissues. Some physicians have even started to use blood and tissue ratios of QH to Q as a biomarker for age- and health-related oxidative stress. So it may not come as a surprise that taking QH can provide benefits that surpass those obtained from taking standard Q. But where's the evidence?
Eleven young, healthy adults ingested 100 mg of QH-absorb with food three times daily (100 mg, t.i.d.) for fourteen days. Blood levels of total CoQ10, oxidized CoQ10 (Q) and reduced CoQ10 (QH) were measured at baseline and after fourteen days. This regimen of QH-absorb consumption resulted in a 777 percent mean increase of total CoQ10 levels compared to baseline and a 100 percent increase in plasma QH levels, the "active antioxidant" form of CoQ10.
Two conclusions can be drawn from these study results. First, it appears that even young, healthy individuals can achieve benefits from taking ubiquinol (reduced CoQ10) from QH-absorb that surpass taking Q alone. Previously, it was presumed that only older individuals would benefit from taking QH-absorb as it is known that starting about the age of 40, QH levels begin to decrease in the body. Second, the 777 percent increase of total CoQ10 levels measured after taking QH-absorb is more than double the levels achieved by even the best Q supplements. This suggests QH-absorb is at least twice as efficient in raising blood CoQ10 levels.*
Scientists have understood the value of QH for decades. It has just taken that long to figure out a way to stabilize QH so it can be formulated into a nutritional supplement product. Toxicity studies have shown little concern with taking QH directly, even at high doses. Plasma QH levels appear to plateau after two to four weeks of daily ingestion and then return near to baseline two weeks after daily ingestion is discontinued. It also appears that supplementation with QH does not reduce CoQ10 biosynthesis in the body.
Jarrow Formulas QH-absorb is made with ubiquinol (QH) the more bioavailable, active-antioxidant form of CoQ10. It utilizes the Q-absorb natural, proliposomal delivery system for enhanced absorption beyond that of QH alone.
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Jarrow Formulas QH-Absorb, 100mg, 120 Softgels.